X Crimes: dozens get arrested
January 27, 2007
ASPEN Parking lots overfilled and Aspen police arrested a dozen people as the full impact of Winter X Games took hold Friday night.”We’ve been very busy,” Aspen Police Sgt. John Rushing said. “Too much to document yet.”Rushing said there were 18 police reports filed, resulting in 12 arrests and a busy detox center. A missing person, disturbances, assaults, drunk-driving offenses and underage drinking were on Friday night’s list of infractions.”It seems busier than other years,” Rushing said. “It’s nothing we can’t handle, but it’s keeping us busy,” he said.With the numbers of people, the transportation crunch and the a “younger, wilder crowd” at the outdoor concert events made it a tougher job than the average rowdy Aspen New Years Eve, Rushing said.Parking perilOn Saturday, the intercept lot at Highway 82 and Brush Creek Road was full by noon, forcing visitors to search for parking in Aspen.”Saturday’s always the big day,” said Joe Bauer, patrol director with the Pitkin County Sheriff’s office. Bauer said experience shows that parking is not as big a problem on the Sunday of X Games.Bauer said the event has run smoothly at Buttermilk and at the park and ride.”In year’s past, we’ve had jam-ups on the highway,” Bauer said. “We’ve been doing it so long, we’re much more organized.” He said there have been no arrests around the venue. Most arrests associated with the games have been made in the city of Aspen.Sheriff’s deputies who cover the Buttermilk site made a few drunk-driving arrests, intervened with a few underage drinkers, and dealt with others who’d had too much to drink, Bauer said. “The event has been well-behaved so far.”By Saturday afternoon, Bauer’s deputies had already confronted a few out-of-control X Game revelers.”Things are warming up out there,” he saids.Sober XOfficials from the Right Door, an area alcohol and drug case management area, set up a makeshift detox in a government meeting room at the old youth center.Five clients showed up Friday night, and volunteers shuttled one extremely intoxicated person to the detox center in Garfield County. “We just make sure they’re safe,” said Brad Osborn, director of the Right Door. Volunteers cover the public meeting room in plastic to protect the carpets from vomit, and bring in mats for intoxicated visitors to lie on.”It’ll be another big night tonight,” Osborn predicted Saturday afternoon.